Innovation is blossoming around the world, but Bangladesh remains stagnated compared to the previous year.
Bangladesh’s poor performance in innovation has put the country nearly at the bottom of The Global Innovation Index (GII) 2019, released on Wednesday.
Bangladesh ranked 116th both in 2018 and 2019 iteration of the GII, indicating a deadlock of innovation in the country that performed below expectations for its level of development.
In the Central and Southern Asia region, Bangladesh ranked the lowest.
In comparison, neighbouring country India has ranked 2nd among the lower middle income countries and 52nd in the overall ranking.
Meanwhile, Pakistan ranked 105th, Nepal 109th and Sri Lanka 89th. Maldives and Afghanistan are missing from the index.
Bangladesh’s innovation performance becomes apparent with the fact that there are 26 lower middle income countries in the index database and Bangladesh ranked 24th among them - just above Nicaragua and Zambia.
However, there is a more concerning sign regarding the issue. The ranking system reveals Bangladesh is actually slipping down in the index, dropping from 114th position in 2017.
In 2016, Bangladesh received 117th position in the GII.
The Global Innovation Index (GII) 2019 ranks and breaks down the innovation performance of 129 countries and economies around the world.
Some positive indicators
According to the GII report, Bangladesh showed several positive innovation indicators in sectors such as government online services, E-participation, gross capital formation (percentage of GDP), microfinance gross loans (percentage of GDP).
The country has also showed strength in sectors including domestic market scale (PPP), state of cluster development, high-tech imports (percentage of total trade), growth rate of PPP (GDP per worker) and industrial design by origin.
Central and Southern Asia region
Economies of the Central and Southern Asia region have seen further improvements in their GII rankings in 2019, with five economies improving their rankings and India moving forward into the top half of the GII.
India maintains its top place in the region and moved up five spots - from 57th last year to 52nd this year.
It remains 1st in the region and moves up to the 4th position in the GII rankings among lower-middle-income economies. India has also outperformed on innovation relative to its GDP per capita for nine years in a row.
Thanks to higher scores in patent families in two or more offices and the quality of scientific publications, India remains the 26th economy in the quality of innovation aggregate and the 2nd after China among middle-income economies
India's improvement this year is largely due to its relative performance and less so to new GII data or methods. It improves in four of the seven GII pillars.
The Islamic Republic of Iran remains 2nd in the region, moving up four positions to take the 61st spot. Kazakhstan moves down five positions ranking 79th this year.
The remaining economies rank in order within the region as follows- Sri Lanka ranks 89th this year, followed by Kyrgyzstan (90th), Tajikistan (100th), Pakistan (105th), Nepal (109th).
Globally, Switzerland is the world’s most innovative country followed by Sweden, the United States of America (USA), the Netherlands and the United Kingdom (UK), according to the GII 2019.